While we are spending more time at home, some people have more time to read. If this is you and you are looking for some new books, here are some suggestions from our church family.
Book review by Ronali Bruce
Coronavirus and Christ by John Piper coulnd’t have come at a better time. It is a book soaked in the gospel of Jesus, it is convicting, fosussing our attention back to an eternal perspective while affirming our reality.
One of my favourite quotes from the book – John Piper says: “The same sovereignty that could stop the coronavirus, yet doesn’t, is the very sovereignty that sustains the soul in it.”
Coronavirus and Christ is a book that encourages me to acknowledge God’s sovereignity in every hardship in life. Not just during this pandemic, but also in sickness, death, grief, depression, anxiety, job loss, uncertain future everything! … God as governer over ever season of our life.
Maybe you’re like me, and sitting down to read a book without interruptions is a luxury, so I’ve listened to the audio version of this book. In total it’s only about 3 hours long and as an added bonus is read by John Piper himself. The reality of God’s love has brought me to tears while cleaning our home or cooking dinner for the family. I can’t recommend this book more. It is on point for all of life’s struggles while pointing us to the hope we can have in Jesus.
This book is available as a PDF for free here or as an audiobook from wherever you download your audiobooks.
Book review by Joanne Walpole
This is another book that has just been published for these extraordinary times that we are in.
Sometimes its hard to know what to pray and this little book is filled with simple prayer suggestions, drawn straight from the Bible.
It has 5 main sections and I have found the sections on praying for the response and praying for our church the most helpful. Each section starts with pointing us to some scripture and then gives ideas as to what to pray on a particular subject in light of the scripture.
The book is mainly aimed at Christians and is an easy read that you can dip in and out of. I think this book will encourage you to pray and to pray Biblically for the situation which we are in.
It can be found at The Good Book Company in paperback for £2.99 and as an ebook for £1.59
Book review by Bart Erlebach
‘Just Do Something!’ is a short book you really should read about God’s guidance. It will challenge the unhelpful, unbiblical thinking that most of us assume to be true about God’s will for our lives. You may find this an uncomfortable book but actually the Biblical truths it explains, when taken on board, replace anxiety about what God wants me to do with my life with a genuine freedom to live wholeheartedly for Him. It is well written and not a long book – so it wouldn’t take long to read (though you may want some thinking time after some of the chapters). So if you are wondering what God wants you to do with your life, this is the book for you – His will is that you to read it!…Or is it?…oh, just read the book.
It can be found at The Good Book Company in paperback for £7.86
Book review by Robin Walpole
These are bewildering and uncertain times, when many are looking for meaning and asking where is God in our coronavirus world. This small book, 64 pages, written by John Lennox, an Oxford professor, answers that questions sensitively and in an easily understandable way. The book engages well with the questions that our families and our communities are currently asking and is a challenge to those who use disease and natural disasters to question God. The book also explains well why Christians can speak confidently about hope and can feel a sense of peace, even in a world of uncertainty in which death has suddenly loomed closer.
It can be found at The Good Book Company in paperback for £2.54 or as an e-book for £1.59.
Book review by Andrew Griffiths
Do we really know the Bible? Do we trust the Bible? Do we love the Bible? I’ve found this book by Kevin DeYoung really helpful – “Taking God at His Word”. This is what it says on the back: “The Bible stands at the heart of the Christian faith, but what do you really believe about it? Does it shape the way we think and feel and act? We all have questions about it. Can we trust it completely? Does it really contain everything we need for our complicated lives? Shouldn’t we focus on Jesus, rather than the Bible?”
These are the things that Kevin DeYoung tackles in this book and I found it really helpful. Here are some key points from the heart of the book:
Sufficiency: The Scriptures contain everything we need for knowledge of salvation and godly living. We don’t need any new revelation from heaven.
Clarity: The saving message of Jesus Christ is plainly taught in the Scriptures and can be understood by all who have ears to hear it. We don’t need an official magisterium to tell us what the Bible means.
Authority: The last word always goes to the word of God. We must never allow the teachings of science, of human experience, or of church councils to take precedence over Scripture.
Necessity: General revelation is not enough to save us. We cannot know God savingly by means of personal experience and human reason. We need God’s word to tell us how to live, who Christ is, and how to be saved.
Or to rearrange the order of the attributes, we could say: God’s word is final; God’s word is understandable; God’s word is necessary; and God’s word is enough.
The last list of attributes form the subsequent chapter headings in this small but immensely helpful book. So if you want to know more about how to trust, understand and love the Bible, then I’d recommend this book.